Paulsen invites seasoned players to join Hornets
GEOFF Paulsen has visions of Ipswich Hornets winning the Brisbane premier competition and producing Queensland Bulls.
But in the meantime he's got a season to prepare for and he's asking Ipswich West Moreton Cricket Association clubs for some help.
The former Wynnum player/coach has been training with a squad of about 30 senior players to make up two teams for the Hornets to contest the Brisbane first and second grade competitions.
About 20 of them have returned from last season's squad, which was based at Beenleigh.
With the club now located in Ipswich, it is fitting the coach is a bloke who learnt the game here.
Paulsen was amazed to see 60 players trial for the Lord Taverners (under 16) Hornets team.
The challenge for him will not be recruiting juniors however.
Paulsen thinks the talent pool is sufficient that Ipswich should be competing for main titles in five years. It is ambitious but still a long time to wait when you get judged on results.
"I think it's going to be slow progress to wait for the kids to come through," he said. "We want to keep it Ipswich oriented."
Which is why Paulsen hopes to see more seasoned Ipswich club players try their hand with the club.
Former Northsiders and Ipswich representative player David Lyons is one who has come along, and Paulsen would love a few more.
Having seen how a premier grade club is run well at Wynnum and Wests, Paulsen is encouraged by what the Hornets have to offer.
"It's getting better," he said. "It's going in the right direction.
"The biggest thing is they need all the Ipswich clubs to get on board and send them over.
"Whatever standard is fine.
"We won't turn anyone away."
The Hornets have asked the Ipswich and West Moreton Cricket Association clubs to nominate some of their top players to try out with the Hornets.
The short-term challenge facing Paulsen is instilling his squad with the confidence to compete.
"It's just the experience," he said.
"Getting guys to believe they can play at this level.
"They're going to be up against people like James Hopes and test cricketers in club cricket.
"They need to believe they should be on the same field."
Once they do, look out.
"There's no reason Ipswich can't be one of the most dominant clubs," Paulsen said.